[OPE-L:3745] RE: Hairsplitting

Allin Cottrel (cottrell@wfu.edu)
Sun, 1 Dec 1996 16:45:06 -0800 (PST)

[ show plain text ]

On Fri, 29 Nov 1996, andrew kliman wrote, in reply to Paul's

> Paul C: "... the dual conservation of total prices and total profits. In
> what way is this a useful or important result in predicting how economic
> relations will develop?"
> The two equalities together imply that the general profit rate (whether
> uniform or not) equals s/(c+v). Hence, they imply that the magnitude of the
> profit rate is determined in production, before
> commodities go to market...

Andrew's claim here, it seems to me, trades on an
equivocation between the single-system and the standard or
"dualist" conception of value. If values are conceived as
"embodied labour coefficients", then it is fair to say that
the magnitude s/(c+v) is indeed determined "in production".
But on the single-system view c and v are in prices of
production, which are *not* determined "in production", but
rather in the process of market competition (or notionally
so, since market competition does not in fact generate a
uniform rate of profit).

Allin Cottrell